Former minister and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) general secretary Bikram Singh Majithia today met Uttarakhand chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat and requested him to extend financial assistance to the families of eight Baba Bakala residents who went missing in Uttarakhand after paying obeisance at Shri Hemkunt Sahib in July this year.
The former minister, while meeting the Uttarakhand chief minister at the latter’s office in Dehradun today, also requested Mr Rawat to direct the concerned authorities to make a lawful closure to the case if they were satisfied that every attempt had been made to locate the last remains of the eight pilgrims who went missing after calling their families on July 6 from Gobind Ghat. He said issuance of death certificates by the Uttarakhand government would provide proper closure to the case.
Giving details of the case, Mr Majithia said eight pilgrims who belonged to village Mehta in Baba Bakala Sahib, had not been heard of since July 6. He said rescue and search operations had also not wielded any fruitful result.
The minister briefed the chief minister how the tragedy had severely affected the families of the victims. He said one of the victims Mehnga Singh was a taxi driver who had purchased his taxi on a bank loan which was still unpaid. “Mehnga was the only bread winner of his family and the ill fated taxi was his sole source of income”. He said another victim Kartar Singh had three unmarried daughters. Victim Jasbir Singh had left behind a seven year old son while another had left behind a young widow.
Stating that all these families needed a new start in life, Mr Majithia said Uttarkhand, which was known as Dev Bhumi, could give financial assistance through the august office of the chief minister. He said this would send a positive message across the country that various States were one and stood behind their brethren in times of grief and sorrow.
Mr Majithia disclosed chief minister Trivendra Rawat showed deep concern about the fate of the missing Sikhs and assured to provide monetary assistance to their families. He said the CM also asked his officials to complete all formalities needed to give relief to the bereaved families. The Akali leader thanked Mr Rawat for his gracious conduct and promise for prompt relief.
Mr Majithia separately also appealed to the Punjab government to help the Gursikh families who had met a tragic death while on pilgrimage to the holy shrine of Shri Hemkunt Sahab. He said besides monetary compensation it would be in the fitness of things to offer a government job to one ward or family member of each bereaved family. EOM